After this week’s emotional episode, I’ve been thinking a lot about why we are all so obsessed with the story of Captain Swan. The first thing that I always think of though, is how I identify so much with Emma. Granted, most of us are not orphans (from a fairytale land) who grew up in the foster system. But ask yourself this: have you ever felt unloved? Have you ever been lonely? Have your parents ever let you down? Have you ever been dumped by a guy you thought loved you and wanted to spend the rest of his life with you? Did someone ever disappoint you so much, your heart became so vulnerable and raw, you just wanted to run away? All of these things, I’ve felt and experienced at one point in my life. And yet, despite all the horrific things Emma has gone through, she is still a good person, who when she chooses to love, she loves with her whole heart. She has the potential for great magic, and the ability to do wonderful things. Likewise, we all have the ability to love (as deeply and as freely as we want) and we all have the potential for “magic” in our daily lives, by the choices we make and the things we do in faith and in hope. We all have a little Emma in us, deep down inside. The scared little girl who doesn’t want to risk her heart, but knows that when she does amazing things can happen.
Her relationship with Hook fulfills our emotional needs on many different levels. First, it is the classic case of good girl tames bad boy. Chances are you’ve been in love with a bad boy before, one you hoped and wished by the sheer strength of your will you could change for the better. Rarely does that transformation happen. More often than not, he leaves you with a broken heart and an unfulfilled dream. The fact that Emma could get Hook to give up his life’s quest for revenge and make a complete 180 is satisfying beyond compare. We’re talking about the ultimate bad boy - black leather, guyliner, a pirate and a thief, a womanizer. He gave everything up for one reason and one reason alone: Emma. OK, you can sigh now. That is beyond ridiculously romantic, and the fact that it almost never happens in real life makes the success even sweeter.
He’s a reformed bad boy, but he doesn’t stop there. His affection and attentions towards Emma are unparalleled. He gives her 100% of his attention (when she allows him to). Still, he isn’t what you’d call clingy. He gives her the space she needs, physically or otherwise. But he never stops wooing her and flirting with her, just enough to remind her that he is still utterly devoted. The other thing that Hook gives her in spades is understanding. How many times do you meet a person in your life who you feel like really gets you? I mean, the kind of person who you could stay up all night with having philosophical discussions on the meaning of life, or even just being silent with, and you know that you don’t have to explain yourself, you can just be. The third part of the Hook trifecta of love is, in fact, love. But not just admiration, respect, and desire. Unconditional love. And this is where a love story becomes epic. So fraught are our daily lives with selfishness and self-centeredness, it is a thing of rare beauty to be loved unconditionally. No matter what Emma does or says, Hook still loves her. Even when she is pushing him away, his love does not waiver. This, my friends, is what we all wish for when it comes to a partner in life. Lucky are the few who can find it.
It may seem like Emma really gets the best deal out of this relationship, but keep in mind that her love is still growing. She has so much potential to love, so much magic in her heart, when she catches up with Hook, she may even surpass him. Where Hook’s transformation was sudden and obvious, Emma’s has been slow and tenuous. She is like a rare flower beginning to blossom under the attentive care of a gardener’s thumb. Emma is a beautiful person, and she really need do nothing else except be herself. That is enough for her reformed pirate. He receives the benefit of her beauty, inside and out. Her kindness, her faith, and her trust are hard-won treasures.
So, yes, Emma and Hook are ridiculously attractive and adorable. Yes, they have fun playful banter. Yes, their kisses smolder so much they practically make the screen catch fire. But when it comes down to why they touch us on a deep level and hold our hearts captive, it has a lot to do with the secret dreams, desires, and unfulfilled wishes we carry in our own souls. Hook satisfies our need to see someone change for completely altruistic reasons, and for a solitary reason: to win the heart of a woman. It’s a lovely dream and a lovely ship. I can’t wait to find out what happens next in their story, and I hope with all my heart that they will truly get the happy ending they deserve.
why we love once upon a time ♥ [ reason #260 ] → “I’d come to terms with the fact that I was gone, but shooting the last scene with Lana was emotional and sad because we’ve had a great partnership over the past three years. It’s sad to say goodbye to people that you’re very close with but just because Robin may be gone, those friendships will still last for life. I could well be back in Vancouver shooting a different show, so we’ll see. I’m a firm believer that these things tend to happen for a reason.” [ x ]